Tuesday – Sunday | 11 a.m. – 3 p.m
Closed Mondays

Holiday Closures: 
New Years Eve, New Years Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day


Adults: $4
Seniors (60+): $2
College Students: $2
Youth (under 18): Free
Members: Free

Admission is free the First Friday of every month and all of May 2021 for Museum Month.


Due to County health ordinances, capacity within the Museum will be limited. Walk-up visitors are welcome though there may be a short wait. We invite you to visit our Garden Learning Center or life-sized grey whale statue as you wait to come inside.

You are welcome to contact us to make an appointment to visit or to check and see how busy our galleries are: 831-420-6115×10 or info@santacruzmuseum.org. Tickets may also be reserved online.

Plan Your Visit


Visitor safety is of the utmost importance to the Museum. Visitors and staff are required to wear masks at all times while inside the Museum and social distancing should be employed while viewing our exhibits and standing in line. In accordance with local ordinances, visitor capacity will be limited within the public spaces of the Museum, but reservations may be made in advance of your visit. Museum staff will be sanitizing public objects regularly, and hand sanitization stations are available as you enter and exit. Learn more about what you can expect for our reopening.


Parking is available on Pilkington Avenue or in surrounding streets. Be Green! Consider walking, biking, or carpooling to visit the Museum. Bike parking available. 1 hour parking permits will be issued to visitors if parking on the Museum-side of Pilkington.


Due to limited capacity, we are not currently welcoming large groups for guided or self-guided visits during our operational hours. If you’d like to make a special request, please contact info@santacruzmuseum.org. To learn more about our school tour programming, visit our Education page.


The Museum is committed to ensuring accessibility for all visitors within our facility. To learn more about mobility, sensory considerations, and more, visit our Accessibility page.


Photography is welcome in our galleries! Consider tagging the Museum on social media (@santacruzmuseum). Artists may sketch museum specimens on exhibit, and we are happy to provide chairs or stools for your use. To sketch specimens from our collections that are not currently on exhibit, please contact collections@santacruzmuseum.org.

Blue Star Museums

Free admission for active duty military personnel (with valid ID) and their families, Memorial Day through Labor Day.

ASTC Passport Program

Free admission is available to families with a membership card from a reciprocal science museum featuring the ASTC logo. Your participating museum must be located more than 90 miles from the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History for the discount to apply. Learn more.

Museum Store

The Museum Store is a great resource for unique nature-themed gifts, scientific illustration, and natural history books and field guides. 100% of your purchase supports our mission to connect people with science and nature.

Our Online Museum Store features a selection of our most popular items, as well as merchandise from the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum. Shipping and pickup available for all orders.


1305 East Cliff Drive
Santa Cruz, CA 95062

(831) 420-6115